6/3/14

A Little of Everything

Looking for the May NewFO Challenge Linky Party?

It's been a bit of a mishmash of activities since my last post. Yesterday, it was time to strain the chive blossoms from my chive blossom vinegar and put it into bottles. It's such an easy task to make this each year, and it's so pretty when it is put into bottles. You can see my little tutorial about how to do this right here (scroll down).


After that, I finished up my doll quilt and then headed outside. I needed to water the annuals, and while I was outside, I noticed that we have quite a few strawberries now.


There was even one that was mostly ripe! I haven't checked outside today, but I'm betting a squirrel or a bird has stolen it by now. If not, I might just steal it myself.


Also, I noticed that the dianthus is starting to bloom. I planted this a few years ago in one of the large annual pots, not considering that it is actually a perennial. No worries. It has filled the pot now, and it blooms for a good long time each year.


Also, it's time to start picking lettuce leaves from the red leaf lettuce, and so I had a salad on last night's dinner menu. The lettuce is so nice right now...with big huge leaves...bigger than my hands.


And it was so crisp and sweet in our salad last night. I just made an orange vinaigrette (with chive blossom vinegar!) and sprinkled some orange sections and candied walnuts over. Yum.


As I was heading back into the house, I noticed the mighty hunter stalking a crow. I doubt he would go after a crow since the crow is as big as he is. Nevertheless, he was practicing his secret Ninja kitty ears.


He wasn't very happy with me when I opened the camera to take a picture and it made it's little musical sound. 

"Mooommmm! You're blowing my cover!"


This morning I did some more work on my latest quilting snow lady. I still need to do the trees on either side of her and finish up her face. Otherwise, she's getting pretty close to being finished. Her quilt is finished, and I always feel as if I've had a little mini-finish of my own whenever I finish embroidering one of these little quilts. By the way, I noticed that she has one of her blocks turned the wrong way. I had already colored it in when I traced the design onto the fabric. Then I checked the picture on the pattern and realized it was wrong there too. Do you see it? Even snow ladies can't see their mistakes until they take a picture...which I assume she'll be doing right after she hangs her quilt on the clothesline.


It was a swimming day for me, and I needed to go to the post office and make a quick trip to the grocery store. When I got home, I got a start on my Sunflower Mosaic. If you missed my post from yesterday, I'm making this for my guild challenge, "Initially Yours". We're supposed to make a quilt using our initials, and mine is going to be a Blooming Sunflower (BS). The pattern I found makes a larger quilt than I need. Mine is not supposed to exceed 36 x 36. So today I started looking at the pattern and starting to get organized. If I cut the pattern down to the size I need, it will end up looking like this:


So the quilt has four different colors (blue, green, yellow, and brown), each in five different values. I was going to do all the cutting first, but then realized that if I'm going to cut the bottom third of the quilt off, then I was going to do a lot more cutting than I needed to do. And...it was going to be very difficult to determine what pieces I needed and what I didn't. Add in the fact that there are some half-square triangles in the mix, and I decided I was going to work with two vertical rows at a time. That way, I can keep it somewhat organized and not drive myself crazy...much.

So I started by picking out five different values of yellow scraps and separating them into piles. Although why I did that, I'm not sure because I don't need any yellow right away. So then I started again and did the same thing with the blue. 


By working with two vertical rows at a time, I can at least do a little bit of chain piecing and still manage to keep things somewhat simple. When I needed to quit, I had sewn together the first two vertical rows, which included just the first bits of green at the bottom.


And that's as far as I got. 

I'm trying something new for dinner tonight, and it takes a little bit of doing...roasting, baking, mixing, etc. I guess I'd better get at it if we're going to eat tonight.

It was a good day. The new quilt is going to be challenging, but not impossible. If nothing else, it will keep me out of trouble for a few days.

10 comments from clever and witty friends:

WoolenSails said...

I haven't even started my garden, will have to just put in some started tomatoes and green beans this year.

Debbie

Vroomans' Quilts said...

The bottles look so pretty! Poor Smitty - intruder. Do I spy a couple of little brown squares in that sunflower that are kitty faces? You have a good start to this challenge.

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

I saw a cat face too! But I don't see what is wrong with the snow block.

Junebug613 said...

I see the wrong way block. Wouldn't have noticed if you hadn't mentioned it, though. Poor Smitty! Did Mommy blow your cover? Ha ha. I'm excited about your sunflower!

liniecat said...

I was hoping youd show n tell how you got started with the sunflower : )
Funny seeing Smitty sat like that - maybe you saved his dignity really by blowing his cover! Crows arent daft lol

Teresa in Music City said...

I always love to read about your garden and flowers Barbara! Fresh lettuce sounds wonderful :) I think you've hit on the perfect way to tackle the Sunflower quilt - take it a bite at a time, just like eating an elephant LOL!!!

quiltzyx said...

Oh boy the Chive Blossom Vinegar is so pretty, even with the flowers strained out!

Your dianthus is really gorgeous! I used to have one when I had a south-facing balcony patio...now it's saved as a water color painting I did in class!

Poor Smitzter, Mom's always ruining your fun....

Thanks for putting zzyzx in your latest snow lady block! LOL It took me a bit of looking to see the turned block - I wouldn't have noticed it if you hadn't mentioned it. ;^) And you've made a good start on the sunflower bloom quilt. Great colors!

Brown Family said...

The Sunflower looks like a fun challenge!

Dar said...

I remember reading about your chive vinegar last year and tried some. My supply of chives is very small so I was only able to make one mall jar for myself. We loved it and I thought this year there might be more, but no luck. I only had a hand ful of blooms, not enough to make any at all. boo hoo. Guess I need to buy another plant and put it in the ground instead of a big pot??

Kate said...

Love your new challenge quilt! It's going to be gorgeous.